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2014 in Music Film: Questioning the "Tortured Artist"

By J. Edward Keyes, Editor-in-Chief

[dek class="right"]All art, our art tells us, is inextricably linked to suffering. But what the films of 2014 increasingly presupposed is: Maybe it isn't?[/dek] The following piece reveals minor plot points for the films Whiplash, Frank and Birdman. The ending of the film We Are the Best! is described in detail. Reader discretion is advised. Near the end of Whiplash, fiercely determined student drummer Andrew Neiman (Miles Teller), sits across a table from Terence Fletcher, his instructor,… more »

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James Blackshaw, Fantômas: Le Faux Magistrat

2014 | Label: Tompkins Square

There have been few superhero franchises as successful as that of Fantômas. It spans centuries and countries as well as all as media — there are Fantômas books, silent serials and feature films, comic books and television. In truth, superhero isn’t quite the correct term; the mysterious Fantômas is, instead, an anti-hero — a sadistic killer and sociopath. That avant-metal supergroup helmed by Mr. Bungle’s Mike Patton is named after him, and U.K. guitarist/ composer James Blackshaw’s latest album invokes that dastard once again.

Last year, composer (and renowned Amelie soundtrack… more »